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How to Perform a Gutter Replacement

How to Perform a Gutter Replacement

One aspect of our homes that seems to be forgotten most often during routine inspections is the gutters. Since the gutters are outside the home and generally only in use during heavy rain, when you are indoors, they often get neglected. This can cause problems for homeowners because it can result in unsightly damage and costly repairs if gutter issues go unnoticed or are not addressed for an extended period of time.

The issue in noticing gutter problems is that most of us don’t wish to travel outside during a rainstorm to inspect it, which is often the easiest way to find problems. Luckily, there are other ways of determining whether or not your gutter is in need of replacement. If the gutter is sagging, bowing, or pulling away from the brackets, this results in the gutter not catching all the debris and failing to redirect the water efficiently. This can lead to flooding, or paint and trim damage, which are also tell-tale signs that it’s time for your gutter to be replaced.

If these signs are present, you can either call a professional to come and inspect your gutters. Many offer free estimates of repair or replacement costs, which can be a good option if you’re not the Mr. Fixit type, or don’t have the time to do the gutter replacement yourself. However, if you’ve determined that you do need to replace your gutter and feel confident that the task is within your abilities, you’ll be happy to learn that the process of replacing your gutters is not all that difficult.

First and foremost, you’ll need to remove any existing debris from your gutters. You’ll also want to remove all of the brackets holding the gutter, and the fascia boards behind the gutters as these will likely have to be replaced as well, if your gutters are in disrepair. You’ll want to keep your fascia boards, however, to use as templates for the new planks. Next, using a circular saw, use the old fascia boards as a guide to cut the new boards.

Once you’ve completed the fascia boards, you’ll want to measure and cut your new gutters. Precise measurements are key. Once you’ve made your cuts, use gutter clips to join the gutter end caps to the corresponding downspouts. You’ll want to fasten these joins with silicone caulk to seal them. Allow an ample amount of time for them to dry before beginning to install them. Once dry, you’ll want to attach the fascia boards to the house, followed by the sealed gutters. Install the gutters at a slight incline onto the fascia boards using the gutter clips and additional screws for added stability, then run some gutter seam sealer along the inner sides of the fastened gutter. Finally, using an elbow connect the downspout to the gutter, also sealing the joint with seam sealer, then secure the downspout to the house with brackets. Voila!

Replacing your home’s gutters is not only simple for those who are handy with a circular saw and drill, but also smart. If damaged gutters go unchecked, serious problems can occur that are far more expensive and time consuming than simple gutter replacement. Wood rot, termite infestations, standing water, and mold can all result from bad gutters. So if you think your gutters need a little work, it’s best to get do a gutter replacement now, than pay for the damage incurred by not doing so later.

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